Join us for KnitLab Summer Workshop!

Join us for our current adventure in designing to learn.

Don’t know how to knit? No problem!  Just bring yourself, all materials are provided.  Application materials can be found here.


WHY are we hosting this workshop? The goal of this workshop is to better understand what students can learn about math when engaged in design activities…something they rarely have chances to do in school. This workshop is part of a research study being conducted by Dr. Melissa Gresalfi, a professor at Vanderbilt University. The goal of the study is to investigate what students learn about problem solving as they engage in design activities.

WHAT am I signing my child up for? If your child is interested in knitting, learning to knit, or is just passionate about design, this is the place for him or her. Each day your child will attend KnitLab and will work on a project that they have designed themselves, that conforms to some goal the group has established, or will contribute to a larger project collectively designed with other youth.  By the end of the week, your child will have learned to knit, and will have started (or completed) several projects of their own design.

What does it mean for this to be part of a research study? The National Science Foundation has funded us to do this work because they care a lot (as do we) about why some kids think that they hate math or can’t do math. We have started this project to look at how math is used in every day settings, with the goal of expanding our ideas about what it means to do math, or who is good at math.  In order to answer these questions, we need to collect data about students’ learning, their enjoyment, and their thinking about design. The goal of the study is to investigate what students learn about problem solving as they engage in design activities.  Details about exactly what kinds of data we will collect, and what will happen with it, is included in attached letter.

How do I find out more? The link above (and here too: will take you to the application materials. But you can also feel free to contact Dr. Gresalfi either by phone (615) 343-2606 or e-mail (



About Melissa Gresalfi

Melissa Gresalfi is an Associate Professor in Mathematics Education and the Learning Sciences in the Department of Teaching and Learning at Vanderbilt University. Professor Gresalfi’s research considers cognition and social context by examining student learning as a function of participation in activity settings. Following a situative perspective on learning, she has investigated the development of dispositions towards learning in mathematics classrooms by examining how opportunities to learn are constructed in mathematics classrooms, and how, when, and why different students take up those opportunities. Using this lens, Gresalfi has explored the extent to which classroom practices are equitable and examined categories such as race, gender, and previous mathematical experience as they arise in interaction.
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